|Reviews for To Sleep Perchance to Dream|
| professional griefer 10/13/12 . chapter 4
I really liked Oren in this chapter, the way you described him and his dialogue worked well to characterize him and I feel like he's one of the better characters.
I also enjoyed the variation in your dialogue. You did what I find really hard, which is finding distinct voices for each character. The words used from person to person make everything different and adds another great layer to your dialogue.
I don't like your pacing. It feels kind of slow and I'm not all that into the plot currently. I think you could speed things up a bit and the story wouldn't suffer.
But overall, really good work.
| Anihyr Moonstar 10/10/12 . chapter 28
Opening: I like that you opened with a bang (sword at the throat of a main character tends to achieve that). However, since he's already met Aurora, and in fact already asked her that same question (having thought she was the princess already), I'm confused as to why he's asking her again now, in more or less the same words he did last time, too. I would think he'd already know she didn't know.
Characters: Bryn is suitably insane as always. I was sort of hoping her ranting and snarling would have gotten her killed then and there, but I suppose that's too much to ask for.
Here - ["Momma, please…"] Aurora really reminded me of Aury. Same phrasing, same idea - trying to calm down her wild "mother" when she's being completely irrational.
I like the characters of the prince and his guards, too. Despite their brief showings so far, they each manage to flaunt at least a bit of their personality.
Ending: I'm very worried by the end. On the one hand, I'm glad Aurora is going to be able to get out, but on the other, I do not like it at all that Bryn will not only be coming with her - but that she'll be tended to medically. I hope the third time's the charm and we finally, *finally* get a happy ending by the end of this third part, but I suppose I'll have to just wait with my fingers crossed.
Technical/grammar: [She remembered him in the forest saying: "it is you," with the same startling clarity.] You italicized "it" here instead of "is" and it reads oddly. Also, you don't need the colon (should be a comma), and the 'i' in 'it' should be capitalized.
You switch back and forth between capitalizing and not capitalizing both "prince" and "leige". Either would be fine, but you should be consistent about it and pick one way to do it (either capitalized or not - not back and forth).
Er...there was more, but now I've lost track. XD Oh well. Over two sentences anyway. Enjoyable chapter all around. :)
| Katsurou Shimizu 10/10/12 . chapter 1
Haven't read fairy tales for quite a while (actually since forever) so it's nice to read an adult retelling.
I am in awe of how you managed to paint the pictures of the daily lives of a royal household, which really created that sense of immersion for me as I read the passage. I could pick up a leaf or two in terms of description here.
You also established Brynhild very quickly as the antagonist character with the last ominous and foreboding words of hers. That italics for the sweet was a nice stylistic touch.
Looking forward to what happens next.
| Luckycool9 10/10/12 . chapter 4
I liked how the prince is in as a character because he represents typical royalty, he is a person who only wants his way and throws tantrums and proves he might change later on. I also liked how Bryhcild made her plan perfect because she know how to make it seem that the blame was elswhere in a plague that didn't exisit. It shows how wicked Bryhild truly is.
| Luckycool9 10/10/12 . chapter 3
I like Bryhild's charatcer because she is an evolved , she did not start off as evil but grew to become evil and resentful. I also like the last sentence of the chapter since it is a cliffhanger because it creates suspense and draws me to read the next writing and rocking.
| Anihyr Moonstar 10/10/12 . chapter 27
And the plot advances! Exciting developments this chapter. It occurred to me briefly before, but now I really do worry about Aurora. I hope the prince doesn't feel he needs to take her out, too, or decide that she's the witch's assistant or something.
I think this chapter went at a good pace. Aurora's sporadic checks for any sign of advancing men was a good way to keep the suspense up and keep the chapter clipping along steadily. It was like a quiet backdrop of worry that overshadowed everything.
And of course, it lead up perfectly to the ending. After all that anxiety, finally it's realized right at the tail end, leaving the reader in perfect suspense. I think the last line in particular is a very effective hook/cliff hanger.
Technical/grammar stuff: [She took a shortcut across the river and swam across] This sounds redundant. I would reword it to "She took a shortcut and swam across the river..."
["What is?" Brynhild questioned,] "What is it?" Looks like you're missing a word there.
[Aurora encouraged Brynhild to take another helping and was glade when color sprang up in her mother's cheeks again.] "Glad" not "glade".
[Brynhild clutched onto her daughters arm.] Should be "daughter's", possessive.
[Brynhild shrieked and sighed in terror,] I would just say "shrieked in terror". The "sighed" reads awkwardly, and I don't tend to associate sighs with a sign of terror anyway.
| Jax Creation 10/10/12 . chapter 2
Ah, this is really good :3
I'm loving the plot; the King and his scorned mistress... crazy, overly-possessive scorned mistress, that is. Brynhild is clearly an extreme person... I know that she's going to do something stupid... aaaaah! Anticipation! Cliffhanger endings are good but so bad at the same time! (T_T)
Characterisation is excellent! You capture your character's personalities really well. :3 Oren is a spoilt brat. Frederick is a noble, upstanding King. Aurorette is the beautiful, gentile Queen. You've really made them come to life!
Just want to add a note to keep an eye on your grammar, especially commas in dialogue. Quite a few are missing. And "She reached out to him as he stalked away but he alluded her" should be "She reached out to him as he stalked away but he [elluded] her". Alluded means to call attention to - just a small typo :3
| Luckycool9 10/9/12 . chapter 2
I like how their is still a sense of the plot. This is because after chapter 1 or the prologue, the writer starts with something new or off-tangenet and the plot made it more enjoyable. I disliked how short it was. I felt that it wasn't enough information and I know nothing about the setting. I like to know a brief idea of what the castle looks like...that is all...what a nice read!
| Anihyr Moonstar 10/9/12 . chapter 26
Technical/grammar: [...placed the wolf-pelt hat on her father's thrown as a sign to her mother...] On her father's "throne" not "thrown". Thrown is a verb - to throw. :P Throne is the noun.
[to trade with the huntsmen.] Huntsman. If it's just one. Guess I'll find out soon.
[The open fields were wet and soggy, her feet sunk into the mud with each step.] Semi-colon after "soggy" or a period (or add an "and"). At present, it's two separate sentences stuffed into one.
I like that we get to see a little more into Aurora's character this chapter. Last chapter we got a sense that she was responsible - working into the night and caring for her sick mother - but now it's reinforced. She's freedom loving, to some extent - having ventured father into the woods than necessary on past occasions - but she also takes care of things (trades with the huntsman, cuts back the rose bushes). And, of course, she displays kindness in making sure that the huntsman's family gets some extra food.
I enjoyed their dialogue, too. It felt real - friendly, but practical. Both of them saying only what was necessary to get the point across (particularly in regards to the winter). I'm also very curious about that "as though he wanted to say something more..." line. It certainly makes me wonder what's to come there.
Ohhh, and the plot thickens again. I really liked Dirk - even in just that tiny snippet. Something about the way he seemed to be very quietly making fun of the prince ["Here my Prince," the man – Dirk – responded, but his voice was low, as if only for her benefit.] made me snicker.
I also think that whole scene is an amusing parody of the traditional fairy tale meeting of prince and princess. ["Are you not the trapped Princess, held captive by an evil witch in a crumbling castle? Did you not sleep for a hundred years?"] ["I live with my mother."] Lol. A very nice twist. This whole story so far feels sort of like like taking fairy tale and telling the "true" story, to explain how the myths came about but also explain the "magical" parts of it with real things (the princess is eternally "young" because she's not the same one at all, the witch is old and haggard and evil 'cause she's old enough to be Aurora's grandmother, etc.).
| Anihyr Moonstar 10/9/12 . chapter 25
I like that, even without the header of "sixteen years later", the opening paragraph gives us a good sense that many years have passed. Aurora is working on her own, and Bryn is finally showing the signs of definite aging. On reading the last line of that paragraph, I can't help but hope that Bryn dies off soon - hopefully in agony.
I find the snippet of dialogue in which Bryn calls out to "Aury" and looks fearful particularly interesting. Of course, Aurora couldn't know that Aury was also Aurelia's nickname, but it's convenient for Bryn - if she has a slip of the tongue - and vague at the same time. What if at some point, as she goes senile, she does mistake Aurora for Aurelia? It seems like an easy switch to make where she might start screaming at her new 'daughter' while seeing the ghost of the past one.
For some reason, I'm interested already in that very brief mention of the huntsman character. Since huntsman have played important roles in fairy tales before I suppose, I have to wonder if he will have any more significant of a part later on.
Technical/grammar: [She worked until all of the pre-drafted pieces had been used, and finally she curled the exposed end against the side maiden to keep it from unraveling and after stretching her back she went to the fire.] This is a run-on sentence. To fix it, I would just make the end [After stretching her back, she went to the fire.] a separate sentence, since that solves it neatly. But you could also break it up after "used" and before "finally" since that's the other break point. (Currently it's three sentences combined by two "ands".)
[Brynhild closed her eyes again and muttered, "your father always loved onions." She made a pitted expression of disgust with her mouth, "he was always eating them and then he would get very close to your face and whisper.] Capitalize the 'y' in 'your'. Period after "mouth". Capitalize the 'h' in 'he'.
[In the morning she would search the huntsmen out and trade her wool for his meat.] Since you say "his meat" I assume this is just one huntsman. If that is the case, it should be "huntsman" not "huntsmen".
| Anihyr Moonstar 10/9/12 . chapter 24
Oh dear, way to open in a way that instills dread in the reader with the first sentence. It definitely gets right to the heart of what's going on and instantly makes me worry for her, while at the same time wanting to know how she's fairing. Surely she won't just leave her there? Except, knowing Bryn, that's not 'sure' at all...
Somehow, the scene where Brynhild cried made my gut twist with that much more hate for her. How *dare* she cry, when she's the cause of all the horrible things going on around her? It was a powerfully emotional moment, but internally it just made me seethe at her.
Oren remains my favorite character, even in death. When he appears here, it feels like he truly will be there for Aurelia, no matter what - death, abandonment, Bryn - nothing can hold him away from her. And even when it was Aury that let him walk out into the snow, he's still the one crossing all barriers just to assure her she'll be alright.
And, of course the ending is such an eerie reflection of the other times we've seen Bryn do this - with Aury at the very beginning, with Aury after she'd murdered the king and queen, and now with Aurora. It's an interesting waypoint, looking back. When we first saw her rocking Aury, it was a sweet gesture of a nurse simply caring for her (or so it seemed); when she had Aury to herself, she was clearly deranged already, but now...it's truly been driven home to a much deeper degree. I think it really works well as a closer for the second Act, if you will. (Well, second Part. Still.)
| Persevera 10/8/12 . chapter 23
Well, it doesn't sound as though Aury will have to live for long without Oren. On top of all her other offenses, Bryn's a hypocrite who seems to have forgotten the part of her past when she took pleasure from Frederick's body.
I just realized that this story is going to carry on for quite a while longer. I suspect that the child or grandchild of Lisbet or Gesine will figure into the story at some point
| Persevera 10/8/12 . chapter 22
Evil woman. Can't believe I briefly liked her and couldn't stand Oren when he was a little boy. a credit to your writing that you can make readers have a complete change in opinion on characters.
This chapter answered all of those nagging questions from the previous chapter well, as far as how Aurelia could agree to return with her mother and have Oren just leave...not that that matters now.
The interlude with the crow and Oren's fragmented memory was nice.
I don't understand the significance of Bryn's suddenly sitting in Frederick's chair. Did she somehow not feel right about it before because it would have passed to Oren?
What the hey...I'm reading on
| Jax Creation 10/8/12 . chapter 1
Beautiful set-up. Your descriptions are elaborate and eloquent, you really painted the world for me, particularly the hustle and bustle of the palace household anticipating the return of its king
Brynhild holds an air of mystery; she seems like a kind, motherly sort of woman, but those last few lines gave me chills. I'm not sure if it was your intent, but she really gave me the creeps, particularly with the emphasis on sweet in "My sweet darling..." I get the feeling that she's going to try and whisk away the princess in the dark of the night and lock her in a tower... I mean this in a good way of course; you've done a remarkable job of conveying emotions (in this case, possessiveness), especially for such a short prologue.
*Grammar: "Their speed was steady and resolute[,] and the castle itself seemed to quake with anticipation."
| Small Wings Flying 10/7/12 . chapter 14
Opening: I like how you turned the revitalising scene of spring on its head. Clever use of description there and it links quite nicely to the prologue despite being distinct from it by use of time. Very clever too to have a blizzard cloud the time between the prologue and the first chapter.
Spelling/grammar: [She spent sleepless nights, and dreamy indoor afternoons] - I think that comma causes an unnecessary pause there.
[How many Princess can one castle have? ] - Princesses in plural.
["I know who it is?" she confirmed.] - fullstop instead of question mark? Or perhaps not confirmed it that question mark is supposed to be there.
[Aurelia clutched the beautiful woman's arm below the elbow; the same hand that was still touching her face.] - i don't think that's where you use a semicolon as they don't read as two separate clauses. A comma or dash perhaps?
Writing: I must say, it's very interesting how you seem to single-mindedly focus on Aury in the narration. For eg.[When she closed her eyes she saw him lying frozen on a cliff somewhere very far away from her.] - that it's from /her/ as opposed to far away in general; that specification serves to highlight Oren's relationship with the place he lived and with Brynhild despite none of them being a physical part of that scene. Very clever. I also like the naiveness that appears in the language and structure you've used; a nice allusion to Aury.
Ending: It's very interesting how you've left it open-ended on more than one front. That makes it a good lead on to new chapters and the plot. At the same time though, the fact that you've solidified this ending means that it'll drift in and out in following chapters, so you've made it a lead-on of sorts. A teasing cliffhanger so to speak, but not the sort that will be solved immediately. :)